David George Bentley
April 23, 1953 – April 28, 2023
David George Bentley, 70, of Lake Bluff passed away peacefully on April 28, 2023. Born on April 23, 1953, at Swedish Covenant Hospital, Chicago to George and Irene Bentley.
Dave grew up in Prospect Heights, IL, attending Wheeling High School, where he played football freshman and sophomore years and wrestling his junior year. But mostly, he was interested in music and playing saxophone in the Marching Band, which he did all 4 years of high school. After graduating from Wheeling, Dave attended Harper Junior College until enlisting in the U.S. Navy. He served 4 years in the Navy, earning an honorable discharge. His Navy experience led to his employment at FedEx as a communications technician, which served him well. He was at FedEx for 21 years.
Once retired, he wanted to finish school, so he enrolled in North Park College to obtain his Bachelor of Arts degree. Dave wanted to teach, so he furthered his education at Northeastern Illinois University, earning a Master’s in Special Education in 2007. He was offered a position at Waukegan High School as a Special ED teacher and relished the job. He was happy there until budget cuts years later forced Waukegan to reduce staff.
Dave was a member of the Kiwanis Club of Lake Bluff & Lake Forest for 10 years, joining the club in 2002. He proudly volunteered his time to Serve the Children and held the position of president twice. Many referred to him as “Emperor Dave” as he provided great direction for the club. The club continues to hold an annual beach party which Dave’s implemented to build stronger community amongst the members. He treasured the friendship making some of the best friends of his life.
Dave was always ready with a laugh or a smile. He didn’t mind making jokes at his own expense either…he probably laughed hardest at those. He loved animals and often took in stray dogs and cats to give them a home, at times having 3 or 4 at a time. They often were not very good house guests, but he loved them just the same. He liked watching sports and opted to buy season tickets for the Chicago Bulls 1 year before they drafted Michael Jordan. His timing couldn’t have been better. He scored some good seats at the old stadium: first balcony, second row. Two years later those seats skyrocketed in value, and everyone wanted to be invited to the game with Dave. His love of music lasted into his later years, listening to or watching jazz bands online. He also made time to write, direct, and star in his own cable TV show: One Man’s Journey to Better Health. Interviewing local coaches, athletic trainers, dietitians, and various experts to help him and others lead a more healthful life.
Dave will be remembered for his hearty laugh, his self-deprecating humor, his love of camaraderie, and his kind heart. He’ll be missed by many.
Memorial contributions can be made in loving memory of David Bentley to the
Kiwanis Foundation of Lake Bluff & Lake Forest, PO Box 34, Lake Bluff, IL 60944.